Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Collecting wood for a bonfire in July!

Ballyduff, Northern Ireland - Preparing for the 12th
I have just come back from speaking in a local church in Ballyduff in Ulster. To most of us that means Northern Ireland or just Ireland but to the people who live in that part of the province it's Ulster. Look at the picture that I took. They are preparing and collecting tyres and wood for their annual bonfire on the 12th of July. What commitment! I could hardly take it in! 

Most of us find it hard to understand the mindset of people who hold on to their traditions with such veracity. Nothing seems to divert them from the task of celebrating an event that took place hundreds of years ago. 

If you follow this blog you might be asking what has this got to do with Liverpool? A good question!

Here is the reason. When I was in Ballyduff I met a lot of people who love Liverpool - I can't blame them; it's a great place. Their love however was for one of the city's famous football teams. I am not letting out which one it was, you can guess. The devotion for their favourite team equalled their commitment to their preparations for their annual bonfire. 

My question to you is this? Is there anything that you would show that amount of commitment to? What would you risk everything to preserve or uphold? In my view none of the things that I have talked about in this blog rank high enough in my list of priorities to give them that level of commitment. I do however have one thing that is at the top of my list - my faith in Jesus Christ. One of the early Christians said about the Lord Jesus that he is 'the Son of God who loved me and gave himself for me' (Paul the Apostle). One of the great missionaries from England of a past generation said this 'If Jesus Christ be God and died for me, then no sacrifice can be too great for me to make for Him (C.T.Studd).

What are you living for?
What would you die for?

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